Please look over my profile

  • This has become our largest and most active forum because the physics GRE is just one aspect of getting accepted into a graduate physics program.
  • There are applications, personal statements, letters of recommendation, visiting schools, anxiety of waiting for acceptances, deciding between schools, finding out where others are going, etc.

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Please look over my profile

Post by vk5qa » Wed Jan 09, 2008 12:42 am

I have just received a pre-app reply from UCD saying that it's a bad idea to apply and now I'm panicking.
Here are my credetials

Grad School
Huge East Coast Public Univ
GPA: 3.5
Physics GPA: 3.8
Research Exp: Surface Physics - Two publications + Thesis
Teaching Exp: I've taught all the classes that one can teach as as a GTA. Right now I'm an Adjunct Faculty Member at the same place (decided to take a year's break).

Small East Coast Liberal Arts Univ
GPA: 2.71
Physics + Math GPA: 2.9 something (I took Physics and Math almost exclusively and took most of the classes before I was ready for them. I was young, and stupid)
Research Exp: Cosmology - 1st Prize for poster at conference + best physics research award at my univ. 2.5 years of work + very good reco from my prof.

Physics GRE: 680

OK, Am I SOL? I've applied to
OSU (Physics)
UWisc - Madison (Physics)
Rutgers (Physics)
UMd (Astronomy)
UVa (Astronomy)
UCI (Physics)
Drexel (Physics)

I'm considering
U Delaware (Physics)
GMU (Physics)
What do you guys think my chances are? Will my mediocre GRE score and abysmal undergrad GPA keep me out of Physics? Once you overlook those two disqualifiers, the rest of my app looks good. Can you guys suggest places that I ought to think about?
Last edited by vk5qa on Wed Jan 09, 2008 1:55 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Post by will » Wed Jan 09, 2008 1:13 am

Have you retaken the GRE since your undergrad? I'm not sure what effect the PGRE would have on students coming in with their Masters, if they haven't taken the test since they were an undergrad; on the other hand, if you take it as a graduate student there might be some higher expectation of performance.

If you were just applying straight out of your B.S. program, I wouldn't see that GRE score being a serious blight to the schools you list. As for your undergraduate GPA being poor, you gave a much better show in your Masters program, so I wouldn't see that hurting you too much either.

Don't panic. :)

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Post by vk5qa » Wed Jan 09, 2008 1:21 am

No, I haven't. I'm not a good standardized test taker and I really just don't want to put myself through that again if I can help it. The question is, will the poor undergrad GPA and average test score get my application thrown out, or will they look at the rest of it. I need a easy to get into school that does decent work in cosmology. I'm giving up on highly ranked programs like Caltech and MIT. Any suggestions?

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Post by grae313 » Wed Jan 09, 2008 4:21 pm

OK, so you did shitty in undergrad, but now you're trying to show your true abilities. Your graduate grades are great, so what's left?

You need to retake the physics GRE. Show them you've turned around. A significantly improved score would do the most to help your application.

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Post by trupti » Fri Jan 11, 2008 11:36 am

i am engineering student, international and want to apply for astronomy and are my academic scores

general GRE(quant/verbal/AW) = 760 /610 /4
Physics GRE = 760(69%)
GPA= 7.1/10 (absolute scale, not relative). class highest = 8.4 my class rank in 15 out of 36.
I have some research experience in engineering but not project in astronomy for which i got one national level award..also no publications
i will get good recos

I want to know what are my chances for schools ranked between 11-30..should i give physics gre again??...i will be applying next year

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Post by quizivex » Sat Jan 26, 2008 5:40 am

Trupti, I would recommend taking the physics GRE again in April. For an international student it would help to score higher to get into a reputable physics ( or astro) program, though I must say nice job with the verbal!!

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Post by trupti » Sat Jan 26, 2008 6:22 am

Thanks for the reply..but in India physics gre is held only in nov :( I dont think i will go out of India for physics will cause too many problems n will become too costly..then again if i don't know my new score in time, selecting schools will be a problem..Though I speculate that if I give pgre next year my score will significantly improve as i will have time to study quantum mechanics and statistical mechanics (didn't study these two topics this time due to lack of time n engg background:( )
I don't know what I will be doing..too confused!!
Though with this stats can you give me your opinion about where can I get in??

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Post by quizivex » Sat Jan 26, 2008 6:38 am

I see your concern. I was glad they offered an October test this year in the US because I found out my score early enough to properly decide where to apply.

I honestly have no idea what your chances are for admission. I don't even know what mine are, haha. Though I'll find out in a month. You could browse the forum for past students with a background similar to yours and see where they got in. Also, have other students at your school applied to the US in the past? If so they'd be the best resource to ask!

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